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KARACHI, Dec 8: An Iranian ship is standing at the outer anchorage of the Karachi Port where it was brought from India in the first week of September by its Pakistani crew after wages payment dispute with the shipping company.

The ship had earlier unloaded charcoal at the Haldia Port in India from where it was brought to Pakistan. Mehdi Hassan, captain of M.V ECO Ekram of the ECO Shipping Company of the Islamic Republic of Iran was negotiating with the shipping company which, according to him, had agreed to pay upto 60% salaries of the crew who have not been paid for the last 11 months. The total amount is about US$ 3,00,000.

The sources said that on Saturday when the ship was sailing back to Iran after unloading charcoal in India its captain was informed that the shipping company had stopped salaries of a Pakistani crew on another ship.

At this the captain, chief engineer and other crew members decided to turn the ship towards the Pakistan coastal area. The shipping company was told that there was some problem with the engine of the ship and they were going to Pakistan to rectify it.

Later the captain informed the shipping master, the DG ports Pakistan, ITF inspectors for South East Asia, the Seamen Union, the Merchant Navy Officer Union, the Islamic Republic of Iran, the Eco Shipping Company, Terra Marine Shipping Agency and others of the problems being faced by the crew and the attitude of the shipping company.

According to the sources the crew members have rejected the proposal for payment of 60% salaries and are demanding full wages.—PPI